The Sundarbans Gas Company Limited (SGCL), a concern of state-run Petrobangla will begin installing new household gas connections in Bhola city from August 28.
However, no new industrial connections will be given out at the moment as the date remains still undecided.
SGCL Managing Director Md Nurul Islam told the Dhaka Tribune: “We will receiving applicationsfrom the consumers on August25 and on August 28,we will initially install new household connections to two or three residences. But we are not giving any industrial connections now.”
Awami League (AL) Advisory Council member Tofail Ahmed will formally launch the new gas connections. Petrobangla Chairman Hossain Mansur will also be present there.
The company will utilise gas from the nearby Shahbajpur gas field in Bhola which has a daily production capacity of 30 million cubic feet (mmcf).
There is a bright prospect for setting up industries in Bhola district based on gas from Shahbajpur. However, it has become bleak due to the government’s indecision over the last decade on giving new gas connections to industrial units and for domestic purposes, sources said.
So far, the only commercial consumer of the Shahbajpur Gas field remains Venture Energy Limited, which runs the 34.5MW gas-fired rental power plant burning 7-8mmcfd gas.
Meanwhile, the Power Development Board (PDB)on April 09 this year signed an agreement with a Chinese company, China Chengda Engineering Company Ltd for installing of a 225MW power plant at Borhanuddin upazila in Bhola.Petrobangla has also given its consent for supplying gas to the plant from Shahbajpur.
SGCL Managing Director said, the state-run Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration and Production Company Limited (Bapex) had installed about 20kmof gas pipeline for household connections in Bhola pourasava area, about two and a half years ago, at a cost of about Tk500m.
“Bapex has handed over the pipeline to SGCL on May 1 this year. Now we will install new connections through this pipe line with an approximate need for 1mmcfd,” he said.
The government had not been giving new gas connections for residential purposes in Bhola since 2010, citing supply shortages.
Earlier in 2009, it stopped giving new connections for commercial and industrial purposes including those to power plants and fertiliser units.
The government notified that new gas connections would be given again only if production reached 2,200mmcfd.
On April 16 this year, the High Court withdrew its earlier order issued in November last year that barred the government from giving new gas connections.
On May 7, the government announced that it would resume giving fresh connections to households because production had reached the 2,250mmcfd mark.
At present, five distribution companies distribute gas through pipelines across the country.